Another Cuban defect, oh goody! And, I mean that sincerely. It seems like every season in recent memory there’s been a new Cuban player that joins an MLB club and makes an impact (Jose Fernandez, Aroldis Chapman, Yoenis Cespedes, Yasiel Puig, Jose Abreu, etc.). Well, it looks like Yasmani Tomas (also referred to as Yasmany) may be the next potential superstar, and he could also be a potential fit with the Oakland Athletics.
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Feb 18, 2014; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Oakland Athletics general managerBilly Beane
speaks to the media during MLB media day at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The slugger defected from Cuba in June of this year, and according to his agent on Twitter, has become a free agent.
What makes Tomas, who will turn 24 in November, a fit for the Athletics you say? Well, for starters, he’s a slugger. As you know, as anyone who’s watched, or read about, the A’s know, that Yoenis Cespedes was traded– what? Cespedes was traded? For who? Jon Lester, and he’s basically the reason the A’s didn’t win the World Series already, even though it hasn’t been played, but I digress.
So, yeah, Cespedes left a big question mark in the middle of the A’s lineup. The A’s have roughly 24 home runs and 90 RBI to account for heading into this off-season. And, unless
Brad Pitt Billy Beane wants to re-create Yo in the aggregate, Tomas could potentially be just the player we need.
Tomas, in his five-year career in Cuba (including one season where he only had 26 at-bats, had a triple slash of .289/.345/.506, according to Cuban-Play.com. Tomas also showed some pop, hitting 20 home runs in 82 games in 2011-12 and hitting 15 HR in 81 games 2012-13. (Here’s a video to show a little sample of the aforementioned pop, as well as a very nice throw).
Tomas played all three outfield positions during his Cuban career, but is expected to play the corner in the states. Ideally, Tomas could come to the A’s as a left fielder, a position Oakland needs since Jonny Gomes and Sam Fuld are both free agents.
The issue with the A’s snatching up Tomas, though, is that the San Diego Padres are eyeing the 6’1, 230 pound outfielder tough. They’ve seen him three times in three weeks, according to Baseball America. But, they’re not the only clubs with interest, as there’s been a handful of additional teams seriously considering Tomas.
Another potential complication is the amount of money Tomas and his agent are looking for: a cool $100 million for a seven-year deal. But, if Beane had the money to bring in pitchers like Scott Kazmir and Jim Johnson, who each earned around $10 million in 2014, and with the $10.5 million Cespedes would have earned in 2015 staying in Oakland’s pocket, it leaves you to wonder if there’s a possibility that Oakland could be a dark horse in the running for Tomas.